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I parent a set of eight-year-old twins and let me tell you, the feeling is an agonising cocktail of worry, happiness, excitement, confusion, and guilt. Here’s my story of overcoming that guilt – and the 10-point checklist I made from the journey.
Am I doing the right thing? Will my child grow up to dislike or worse, hate me? Am I conveying the right messages? Am I a good role-model for them to have? Have I been too harsh? Am I setting unreachable benchmarks for them?
With eight years of parenting experience behind me, I am now starting to get a hang of it. I have now come to terms with being the unapologetic, non-negotiating, fearless, badass mom who swears by guilt-free parenting. Why? Because I know my job best! Period.
Guilty parenting doesn’t do any good – neither to the parent nor to the child. It is very critical for parents to let go of guilt, in order to be able to raise their young children into disciplined, well-behaved, sensitive, empathetic and involved adolescents and adults. Guilt is a dangerous emotion, and more so when it becomes the propellant for most of the bad decisions parents make for their children.
How to let go of guilt? Did it come naturally to me? Well, no. I learned like most parents do over time. I have my own little checklist for that. Initially, I had to constantly remind myself to parent without guilt. It has now become natural. It is an art worth mastering, for your own sanity.
Here’s my little checklist.
I see guilt and self-doubt as watermarks of a sensitive and thinking parent. Parenting is not something that must force us to push ourselves to the background and stress us out, leaving us in a perpetual state of guilt.
Being a parent is about knowing the strengths you didn’t know you had and dealing with fears you didn’t know existed.
That’s what I call “50 Shades of being a parent”! There is no right or wrong. There would be many times when you’d think “Damned if you do, damned if you don’t” and that’s normal.
Let’s raise a toast to badass guilt-free parenting!
First published at author’s blog
Image via Unsplash
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